PSYC12010 - Psychology Across the Lifespan

General Information

Unit Synopsis

Developmental psychology offers critical insight into human behaviour across the lifespan: why we are who we are, how we became that way, and how we are likely to end up in the future. In this unit, you will develop and apply knowledge of key underlying principles, theories and concepts in developmental psychology from a lifespan perspective. You will also develop and apply scientific knowledge of developmental processes in the physical, cognitive and psychosocial domains. You will explore the key themes that cut across the many and varied topics in lifespan developmental psychology, including issues of lifelong growth and development, nature vs. nurture, continuity within change, developmental diversity, and the importance of the social, historical, and cultural context in development. Throughout the unit, a scientific approach to the study of developmental psychology will be emphasised, and you will be encouraged to develop a critical and applied understanding of theory and research in developmental psychology.


Level Undergraduate
Unit Level 2
Credit Points 6
Student Contribution Band SCA Band 4
Fraction of Full-Time Student Load 0.125
Pre-requisites or Co-requisites

24 credit points including PSYC11010 or PSYC11008 or PSYC11009.

Important note: Students enrolled in a subsequent unit who failed their pre-requisite unit, should drop the subsequent unit before the census date or within 10 working days of Fail grade notification. Students who do not drop the unit in this timeframe cannot later drop the unit without academic and financial liability. See details in the Assessment Policy and Procedure (Higher Education Coursework).

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Residential School No Residential School

Unit Availabilities from Term 1 - 2024

Term 1 - 2024 Profile
Term 3 - 2024 Profile

Attendance Requirements

All on-campus students are expected to attend scheduled classes – in some units, these classes are identified as a mandatory (pass/fail) component and attendance is compulsory. International students, on a student visa, must maintain a full time study load and meet both attendance and academic progress requirements in each study period (satisfactory attendance for International students is defined as maintaining at least an 80% attendance record).

Assessment Overview

Recommended Student Time Commitment

Each 6-credit Undergraduate unit at CQUniversity requires an overall time commitment of an average of 12.5 hours of study per week, making a total of 150 hours for the unit.

Assessment Tasks

Assessment Task Weighting
1. Online Quiz(zes) 30%
2. Research Proposal 40%
3. Take Home Exam 30%

This is a graded unit: your overall grade will be calculated from the marks or grades for each assessment task, based on the relative weightings shown in the table above. You must obtain an overall mark for the unit of at least 50%, or an overall grade of ‘pass’ in order to pass the unit. If any ‘pass/fail’ tasks are shown in the table above they must also be completed successfully (‘pass’ grade). You must also meet any minimum mark requirements specified for a particular assessment task, as detailed in the ‘assessment task’ section (note that in some instances, the minimum mark for a task may be greater than 50%).

Consult the University’s Grades and Results Policy for more details of interim results and final grades

Past Exams

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Previous Feedback

Term 1 - 2023 : The overall satisfaction for students in the last offering of this course was 65.00% (`Agree` and `Strongly Agree` responses), based on a 17.86% response rate.

Feedback, Recommendations and Responses

Every unit is reviewed for enhancement each year. At the most recent review, the following staff and student feedback items were identified and recommendations were made.

Source: Student feedback
Breaking down and discussing the assessment tasks across the weekly lectures and tutorials was useful to clarify expectations.
Continue to provide scaffolded support for students related to assessment tasks, particularly the Research Proposal.
Action Taken
Students were provided with detailed activities and guidance throughout the tutorials to support their engagement with the assessment tasks.
Source: Student feedback
The combination of a pre-recorded lecture and live tutorial provided more focused time for engaging in content delivery and interactive activities.
Continue to provide opportunities for students to access lecture content prior to tutorial if possible, to allow time for processing information to support engagement with interactive tutorial activities and discussions.
Action Taken
Lectures were provided in advance and students were encouraged to view the lectures ahead of the tutorials.
Source: Student feedback
Students provided positive feedback regarding the detailed tutorial content and learning activities. A small number of students indicated they could not engage with the live or recorded tutorials due to workload.
Continue providing multiple options for students to engage with learning activities flexibly, including inside and outside class time.
Action Taken
Source: Teacher reflection
Students appear to require more detailed information regarding research ethics and methods for conducting research to support the development of their Assessment 2 research proposals.
Identify opportunities to connect learning in this unit to introductory research ethics and methodology in Level 1 units (e.g., Research Methods 1). Consider expanding content relating to ethics and test selection in lecture content earlier in the term (e.g., Week 2: Science of Human Development topic).
Action Taken
Unit learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  1. Apply and analyse the key principles, theories and concepts in lifespan developmental psychology.
  2. Describe key developmental processes and changes within each of the major domains of development from a lifespan perspective.
  3. Describe, apply and critically evaluate major research methods in developmental psychology.
  4. Describe and critically evaluate social, historical and cultural influences on development and developmental psychology.

This unit addresses Foundational Competencies as specified by the Australian Psychology Accreditation Council (APAC). The unit specifically aligns to the following APAC graduate competencies:

1.1 Comprehend and apply a broad and coherent body of knowledge of psychology, with depth of understanding of underlying principles, theories and concepts in the discipline, using a scientific approach, including the following topics: i. the history and philosophy underpinning the science of psychology and the social, cultural, historical and professional influences on the practice of psychology; ii. individual differences in capacity, behaviour and personality; iv. psychological disorders and evidence-based interventions; v. learning and memory; vi. cognition, language and perception; vii. motivation and emotion; viii. neuroscience and the biological bases of behaviour; ix. lifespan developmental psychology; x. social psychology and xii. research methods and statistics.

1.2 Apply knowledge and skills of psychology in a manner that is reflexive, culturally appropriate and sensitive to the diversity of individuals.

1.3 Analyse and critique theory and research in the discipline of psychology and communicate these in written and oral formats.

1.4 Demonstrate an understanding of appropriate values and ethics in psychology.

1.6 Demonstrate self-directed pursuit of scholarly inquiry in psychology.

Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Learning Outcomes
Assessment Tasks Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4
1 - Online Quiz(zes)
2 - Research Proposal
3 - Take Home Exam
Alignment of Graduate Attributes to Learning Outcomes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Graduate Attributes Learning Outcomes
1 2 3 4
1 - Communication
2 - Problem Solving
3 - Critical Thinking
4 - Information Literacy
6 - Information Technology Competence
7 - Cross Cultural Competence
8 - Ethical practice
Alignment of Assessment Tasks to Graduate Attributes
Introductory Level
Intermediate Level
Graduate Level
Assessment Tasks Graduate Attributes
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10